Vision Therapy for Learning Difficulties: Success Stories

Dr. Russel Lazarus, August 15, 2020

Personal stories from parents of children with learning difficulties.

*Names have been changed for privacy protection.

Click here for a list of more success stories pages, you might just recognize your child in.

Julie, 12

Julie started out with scores in the Severe Deficit to Significant Deficit range with wide sweeps between the two in several areas. These fluctuations showed up significantly in her day-to-day school work. She hated to read, couldn’t spell, didn’t like school, tired easily, and was beginning to show signs of low self-esteem. She would say that she wasn’t good at anything, was dumb, and unpopular.

Today, Julie is a different person! Just two weeks ago, her language arts teacher said that Julie had shown recent signs of huge jumps in her cognitive ability. Julie loves school now and wants to leave the house at 7 a.m. to get there early. She is invited to parties and she has a quick wit.

I attribute a lot of these dramatic changes to the work she has done in Vision Therapy.

We are very pleased with the results.

Judith, Julie’s parent


Doug, age 12

After years of various remedial programs, our son Doug was referred for evaluation within our school district because he was struggling with reading in the fifth grade. The school psychologist said the Non-EEN evaluation results indicated that Doug had a reading disability and encouraged us to consider more remedial instruction to improve his reading skills.

I then learned of a Learning Disability Education specialist — who worked with students experiencing similar difficulties like Doug’s — and took him for an evaluation. The specialist suspected a visual processing deficit and recommended we take Doug to Dr. X for a developmental vision exam.It turns out that Doug had vision problems that were interfering with his ability to read, which in turn affected his performance in school. Vision Therapy was recommended and we started the program immediately.

Within just three weeks, the first noticeable change was in his handwriting. After just 2 ½ months of Vision Therapy, he had raised his reading grade level 2 ½ years. It wasn’t long before Doug was reading the newspaper, something he had never done before. Our son was very good in sports before he started Vision Therapy, but he is even better after the program.

Vision Therapy has changed our lives. With the vision problem corrected, it gave us a foundation on which to start remedying the learning skills Doug had missed along the way. Learning became easier. Doug is now an independent and more efficient learner. He is in college-prep classes in high school and has already been accepted at two colleges.

Jane M, Doug’s parent


Chris, age 9

Three years ago, our son, Chris, was a third grader who had never experienced any scholastic fun or success. Every year, Chris had hours of homework where reading and math were problem areas. His teacher told us he had a learning disability but Chris simply did not fit the pattern of the learning disabled. In our estimation, our son DID NOT have a learning disability but was being unduly categorized.

Looking for a solution to Chris’ problems, we sought out Dr. X. Obviously, there are no guarantees in life, but with Vision Therapy, and Dr. X’s guidance, Chris was the proven winner. His reading grades improved, and an attitude shift toward school occurred along with a definite improvement of his math skills.

Today, Chris is completing his first year of Jr. High. He disciplines himself to get up for school without parental prodding. He returns home and after an hour of relaxation, he spends one to two hours studying. Chris is a social and active young boy. NEVER do we hear complaints about school, teachers, project requirements, etc.

What a pleasure to see him finally enjoy school and have a solid B average. Please try Vision Therapy, it works!

Terrence J. B., Chris’ parent

If you want your child to be one of these success stories, contact an eye doctor near you.

SEE RELATED: Can you Improve your Child’s Academic Performance?

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Morgan, age 8

I started Morgan in Vision Therapy because at the age of 7 she was feeling as though she couldn’t read or write. Even though she had mastered all the skills necessary to read, she couldn’t put them all together. I also began to notice her self-esteem showing signs of deterioration.

As a teacher, I knew that there was a great possibility that she could be labeled as learning disabled and I wanted to explore all the other possibilities. I also wanted to help Morgan regain a positive self-esteem.

Upon completion of the Vision Therapy program, Morgan is reading at grade level and her writing has improved. She enjoys reading and will pick up a book on her own to read for enjoyment. Morgan has also regained her confidence and will try new words to read unfamiliar text.

Vision Therapy has been a very positive experience for Morgan. She enjoyed every session.

Deborah B., Morgan’s parent


Amanda, age 9

During a routine eye exam, Dr. X diagnosed Amanda with convergence insufficiency and recommended Vision Therapy. Amanda is a good student but her homework became a struggle in 2nd grade. Her frustration levels were very high.

After only ten Vision Therapy sessions, Amanda is taking the initiative and completing homework with less trouble. In the last three weeks, both my husband and I have noticed that her attitude has improved.

She now tells us she loves us and hugs us spontaneously. She seems happier.

Greg and Ruth S., Amanda’s parents


Kelsey, age 12

Kelsey was screened at school at the end of 4th grade and failed miserably. She has always struggled with school and with reading in particular. Homework took an incredible amount of time and she had developed lots of negative feelings toward school. I worried about how Kelsey would do as the work got harder.

Kelsey spent 16 weeks in Vision Therapy, and about 4 weeks into it, I realized she wasn’t spilling things at dinner and her eye-hand coordination was better. About 3 months after she finished Vision Therapy, suddenly her grades improved and she actually read the first Harry Potter book.

I had a very bright child who really struggled with school. Now I have a child who likes school and can succeed there.

Lisa V., Kelsey’s parent


Alyson, age 11

When Alyson was initially evaluated for Vision Therapy, she was not reading for pleasure at all, it was too frustrating, slow, and straining to her eyes. She felt she was “not smart enough.” She also had regular headaches.

Alyson noted improvement in her reading ability from early on in her Vision Therapy program. By the end, she was truly enjoying it! Her writing, spelling, and self-esteem all improved!

Vision Therapy has been a great benefit for Alyson. After several years of frustration and no apparent reasons for her disability, Dr. X has been a Godsend.

Our only wish is that we would have found Vision Therapy sooner.

Patty S-B., Alyson’s parent


Janis, age 7

My daughter Janis came to Dr. X last November after struggling through the first two months of first grade. I knew something was wrong but could not figure it out.

Dr. X found that Janis needed Vision Therapy. After nine months of Vision Therapy, Janis can read, catch a ball easily, and is catching up with her class.

There is no doubt in my mind that Janis has greatly benefited from Vision Therapy.

I am grateful that I was informed about Vision Therapy and feel more people should be aware of it.

Gail G., Janis’ parent


Ely, age 8

My 8-year-old daughter had always been a bright child, but during first and second grade she continuously struggled with reading. I worked with her daily, got phonics books, and practiced over and over. There were small improvements, but she never progressed enough to read comfortably.

I heard about Dr. X and Vision Therapy through a friend. My daughter began the program and has since become a good reader. She is able to read entire paragraphs smoothly, and she can sound out multisyllabic words on her own.

I am so grateful for Dr. X and the entire staff for their patience and concern for my child. This will be a turning point for my daughter as she continues through third grade and her entire education.

I genuinely feel Vision Therapy will enable her to learn to use her full potential. I strongly recommend it for anyone who may need help.

Eileen S., Ely’s parent


Kasey, age 8

Kasey was a good student in school, but has had to work very hard for her accomplishments. What a difference a year of Vision Therapy has made. Kasey is working much more independently now and her reading has improved immensely.

I wish there was more knowledge about Kasey’s initial diagnosis of ocular motor dysfunction in both the school system as well as the medical field. There are many children being misdiagnosed. These children will get lost in the system and will probably never know why things were so complicated for them.

We are so thankful for vision therapy.

Ed and Debby O’S, Kasey’s parents


Amber, age 9

Amber has benefited greatly from Vision Therapy. Before beginning vision therapy, Amber succeeded in many subjects, but performed well below average in her reading. By the second grade, I was informed that she wasn’t reading at a first grade level.

Amber was placed in a special reading program and worked with a tutor and myself extensively. By the end of the school year, Amber had improved only minimally, to a very low second grade level— well below where she should have been. After 5-10 minutes of reading, she would be in tears.

By the conclusion of Vision Therapy, I saw considerable improvement in Amber’s reading. There is a lot of work in third grade and Amber is earning mostly A’s.

Mary Ann D., Amber’s parent


Lauren, age 11

Lauren’s vision therapy has done wonders for her. She has improved in school, has much more confidence in herself, and has become more outgoing. Lauren is now willing to read by herself rather than asking someone else to do it for her.

It seems a pity to me that more parents and educators don’t have the knowledge to recommend vision therapy for children with learning problems.

Liz McL, Lauren’s parent


Gianna, age 8

Before Gianna started Vision Therapy, we thought that her problems with reading had to do more with some type of learning disability. After being tested at school, which found nothing but a high IQ, we were told again it was developmental.

While reading with my daughter, my husband began to watch her eyes instead of her book and saw them moving all around. We were then given Dr. X’s number by our school and began Vision Therapy.

When Gianna started therapy, she has gained a tremendous amount of confidence when reading aloud in class, as well as independently. She can now actually focus on each word and not lose her place. She has become a fluent reader rather than a frustrated one. There has also been a huge improvement in her handwriting, as well as her spelling. She no longer sees double, or backward letters and words.

It is no longer a 2-hour ordeal to do her homework, she actually asks to do it and wants very little help. She loved coming to Vision Therapy and always had fun, it was never like work.

Not only would I recommend Vision Therapy to others, I wholeheartedly believe this therapy could benefit many children who are struggling, or who are just not up to grade level and have been told it’s developmental. I have already given Dr. Xs number to several friends.

Julie S. I., Gianna’s parent


Taryn, age 13

Taryn experienced headaches and had difficulty focusing on reading, classroom activities and homework after just a short period of time. We had conferences regularly with her teacher, engaged a private tutor, and Taryn met with the school counselor for academic testing and evaluation.

The results of this testing led to a consultation, and treatment with a developmental optometrist. I must admit that when Vision Therapy was recommended for Taryn, we were skeptical because we knew little about it, but after Taryn’s first examination and then our conference with Dr. X, we became very excited and hopeful that Vision Therapy could be the answer to many years of frustration for Taryn, and us as well.

Following Vision Therapy, Taryn’s ability to focus on reading and school work has increased dramatically. Homework each evening in the past was a painful process, but now she stays on task and gets it done in a fraction of the time and without frustration.

Jeanine, Taryn’s parent


Kristy, age 13

Kristy is comfortable with reading for the first time. She is participating with the rest of her class in doing monthly book reports. The best part is Kristy’s newly found confidence and independence.

So many learning disabled children would greatly benefit from vision therapy!

Kristy L.’s parents


Julie, age 7

When my daughter Julie entered 1st grade, it became apparent to her teachers that she had a learning disability. It was suggested that she see a developmental optometrist. After testing, Vision Therapy was recommended.

Vision therapy has made a world of difference to Julie. It was almost as if she had blinders on before. Now that she is in third grade, she is doing well and I believe that the therapy helped enormously.

Julie’s parent

Can you relate to any of these stories? 

If your child has been diagnosed with a learning difficulty, a vision problem may be the underlying cause. Schedule a vision evaluation as soon as possible.

LEARN MORE: Vision for School

Vision therapy can help your child gain the visual skills they need for academic success, while improving their self-confidence along the way.